Colts with 7th-most salary cap space after NFL draft

With 90-man rosters for training camp mostly set around the NFL, the Colts currently have the seventh-most salary cap space following the NFL draft.

According to Over the Cap (OTC), The Colts have $28.41 million in available space.

A good chunk of this cap space was created – roughly $14 million – when the Colts extended DeForest Buckner and pushed a large portion of his 2024 cap charges to future contract years.

When GM Chris Ballard was asked during his pre-draft press conference why the Colts structured Buckner’s contract that way, he pointed to the flexibility that it gave them.

While that $28.41 million is what the Colts have available to them on paper, that isn’t what they actually have to spend. A portion of that cap space will go toward their draft class.

By OTC’s projections, the Colts signing their nine-man draft class will put their cap number at $24.78 million, which will still be the fifth-most in the NFL when all other teams’ rookie draft classes are factored in as well.

Other cap expenses coming down the pipeline include assembling the practice squad and accounting for the 52nd and 53rd players on the eventual final roster. During the offseason, only the top 51 contracts count towards a team’s salary cap figure.

But every team has to incur those costs–not only the Colts. So you get the idea: the Colts are sitting in very good shape from a cap perspective.

So naturally, that begs the question, is there another free agent move coming over the next month or two before training camp begins?

The obvious need for the Colts would be adding to either the cornerback or safety positions. These were viewed as two of the bigger needs entering the draft, but the Colts did not add to the secondary until the fifth and sixth rounds.

When meeting with the media on Wednesday, Colts’ defensive coordinator Gus Bradley would say that the cornerback room was “wide open,” with Kenny Moore as the only proven player. He essentially said the same thing about the safety position with the free safety role up for grabs.

Following the draft, Ballard was asked about exploring free agency and continuing to add to his roster, which is something that he’s not opposed to. And salary cap-wise, the Colts certainly have the ability to do so.

“Between now and the start of the season – there are still some good players out there,” Ballard said after the draft. “There’s some veterans out there that can still play. We’ll dig and investigate all of them and then make a decision if we think they are the right fit for us as we go along.”

For a closer look at the 10 best available free agent cornerbacks and safeties, click here.

Story originally appeared on Colts Wire